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Fixer Upper Season 4, Episode 2

by Joanna Gaines
Published on December 5, 2016

The Morgan family had been through a lot with the recent adoption of their two little girls. I love their story so much that I couldn’t wait to get started with the home they chose and take the stress and worry of renovating right off of their shoulders.

The original style of the Morgans' house had a modern flair to it, but their personal style was more ranch than modern. I was excited to implement this unique combination of clean lines, iron accents, and wood elements to design a modern ranch for this sweet family to enjoy.


Objective: Combine the kitchen and dining rooms to conserve space.

Opens in new tabThe custom built track lighting ties in modern-style lighting to this otherwise cabin-like kitchen.

To save on space, I designed this fun booth-style dining table and bar surround. It ended up working perfectly after our carpenter and friend, Clint Harp, brought the table to life.

Opens in new tabTo give the kitchen the modern ranch feel, I decided a dark-stained shiplap with modern-style open shelving in place of uppers, which made for a balanced match.Opens in new tab

Opens in new tabTo add balance to all of the warm stained shiplap, we went with white lower cabinetry and countertops.

Opens in new tabTo make up for a lack of storage, we added floor-to-ceiling white custom cabinets.

Opens in new tabI love how relaxed this little eat in area is. The barn wood pantry doors and the casual booth are so close to the little office nook. I could just see the kids working on homework while mom is in the kitchen cooking dinner. Opens in new tab

Living + Office Nook

Objective: Create a practical living space for the Morgan family to gather and spend time together. Add a small office nook for kids to study and use the family computer.

We replaced the original wrapped ceiling beams with exposed cedar and wrapped the original feature window with cedar trim as well. This ended up being one of my favorite features of the home. It tied into the ranch style and really gave this space a "wow factor."

We added this fireplace and covered its face in the neutral-colored rock to add a focal point to the room. I loved the texture the rock brought to the space. It gave it a cozy cabin feel, which the Morgan family loved.

I found this "Newspapers at Wholesale" sign at an antiques fair, and it ended up perfectly fitting in the space above the couch.

This little office nook off of the living room is a perfect space for the kids to do homework or the Morgans to catch up on work, but still stay close to family.

To add an extra feature to this deck area, I took a square of wallpaper from my wallpaper line and had it framed on the wall behind this floating concrete desk.

Girls' Room

Objective: Surprise the Morgans by finishing out their kids’ rooms.

Opens in new tabIt was a surprise that we finished out the kids’ rooms. Chip and our girls took on the Morgans' little girls’ room.

Opens in new tabChip and the girls came up with this idea of a scalloped wall and scalloped awnings over the windows. This wall was essentially put together with cedar shingles cut into this scalloped pattern, nailed to the wall, and painted white.

Opens in new tabI love the contrast of the black iron up next to the scalloped wall.

Boy's RoomOpens in new tab

Our boys and I had a blast designing the Morgans' son's room. My boys thought he'd want a space for his friends top stay when they had sleepovers, so we did a custom bunk bed/day bed combination.

We went with unstained "skinnylap" in here, which is mature enough that the room is a place he can grow into, rather than outgrow! It's fun for now, and it'll still be fun when he's 18!

The work desk area is a great spot for him to do his homework, and the built in shelving is the perfect space for storing and organizing toys.

We decided a chalkboard would be good in his workplace, so that he could doodle, draw, practice math, or sketch out anything else he wants.

Interview with Homeowner

How has this experience affected your day to day life?

Just living in the home, we feel like every morning we wake up in a vacation cabin. It feels refreshing, like a sweet gift.

Do the kids have a favorite part about their rooms? If so, what?

Yes, our son loves his built in desk and the loft bed. He goes in there for homework and loves to sit up on the loft and read. He’s really enjoyed his room. As for the girls, they love their beds. It was designed to be like a doll house, so they like to play tea parties, and I think it makes them feel like princesses.

What’s your favorite part of the house?

We loved the front windows and the kitchen. The open space really brings our whole family together. Anytime I’m cooking, the kids are able to be involved.

This was such a special family, and I loved getting the opportunity to work with the Morgans. We had so much fun designing the surprise spaces for the kids, and I love how the project turned out as a whole!